Bopanna-Qureshi win Halle title

Halle: India’s Rohan Bopanna and Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi of Pakistan claimed their second ATP World Tour team title at the Gerry Weber Open with a fighting 7-6(8), 3-6, 11-9 victory over Dutch Robin Haase and Canadian Milos Raonic here on Sunday.

The ‘Indo-Pak Express’, ranked sixth in the world, were playing in their ninth tour-level doubles final and racked up a valuable 250 ATP points.

Bopanna and Qureshi took an hour and 19 minutes to overcome Haase and Raonic in the grass court event, a warm up tournament for the Wimbledon beginning June 28.

They had lost in the quarterfinals of the French Open.

For the big-serving Banglorean, it was his third ATP World Tour doubles title. He won with American Eric Butorac in August 2008 on the hard court in Los Angeles.

In the closely fought final here, top seeds Bopanna and Qureshi did well to hold on to their nerves. The first set tie-breaker was a close affair, but the Indo-Pak pair won the crucial points and took the lead.

Bopanna and Qureshi then failed to convert on any of their four break point chances in the second set before dropping their own serve to stretch the match to super-tie-breaker.

The Dutch-Canadian pair served big but Bopanna-Qureshi hung on to add to their maiden trophy they won on hard court in Johannesburg last year.

Bopanna and Qureshi improved to 2-7 mark in the finals. Their five runners-up finishes came in 2010, including a defeat in their first Grand Slam final at the US Open.

Haase and Raonic, who had defeated Australian Lleyton Hewitt and Peter Luczak to reach the final, were pairing for the first time. For Raonic, it was his first ATP World Tour doubles final. (PTI)

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